You either love them or hate them, but magpies usually generate lots of positive or negative comments from gardeners. They are often regarded as the hooligans of the wild bird population. Although they are still venerated with superstitious awe by some.
Although rabbits in the wild are a welcome sight – in the garden it's a totally different matter. They can cause extensive damage to trees, shrubs, herbaceous perennials, fruit and vegetables. New plantings and soft spring growth are often the most susceptible.
Luckily, badgers are rare visitors to urban gardens – but they can be a problem in larger, rural gardens. These large mammals can cause damage to gardens by trampling plants and digging up large areas in their search for food. Badgers are protected under the Protection of Badgers Act 1992.
Foxes are now common visitors to both rural and urban gardens, where they scavenge for food. They are more of a nuisance than anything else, knocking over bins, but they will trample on plants and dig holes in the ground, in their search for food.
Although still rare, the increasing British wild boar population has resulted in more confrontations between wild boars and humans. And, so their presence in our gardens is increasing too. These large mammals can cause extensive damage to gardens by trampling plants and digging up large areas in their search for food.
Deer, even the smaller muntjac, are large animals and, as a result, can cause severe damage to a wide range of plants if they come and visit. They strip plants bare of leaves and flowers, and can damage tree bark.